negative thinking

Engage in the Power of Negative Thinking

By Laura Bergells on

I’m a cheerful person. But I don’t like positive thinking. It makes me cringe. Instead, I try to spend some time every day engaging in negative thinking. For me, it’s a joyful meditation. “What’s the worse that could happen?” is a question I ask myself every day. And then, I imagine it. I take some …

direct question

How good are you at answering simple questions? Take this easy quiz.

By Laura Bergells on

As an intelligent business person, you might think you are excellent at answering simple, direct questions. But are you? Take this easy, 5-question quiz to find out: 1. A venture capitalist asks how much your new service costs. You: A: Explain how you and your team arrived at the various price points. B. Respond, “$79 …

read it out loud

Say it out loud

By Laura Bergells on

Here’s my number one tip for writing scripts and speeches. It’s simple, powerful, and only four words long. Say it out loud. 1. Say 2. It 3. Out 4. Loud Four words. It’s such an easy tip. So simple. And so overlooked. I get to write and edit scripts and speeches and dialogues for a living. And …

Team Building & Crisis Communication Fundamentals

By Laura Bergells on

I hope you never experience a crisis. But when you do, be prepared. Introducing Crisis Communication Fundamentals, my latest online course. It’s available now in the Lynda.com content library. I felt inspired to write this course because I’ve watched people struggle to figure out how to communicate when something unexpected and unpleasant strikes their organization. My aim is to …

spin doctors gotta spin

Spin doctors gotta spin…

By Laura Bergells on

Public relations pros don’t like the word spin. Call one a “spin doctor” and that’s a low blow. A rude insult. So how can we put a better spin on our profession? As a child, my mom gave me this piece of life advice: “Don’t call people names they don’t want to be called.” However, …

george carlin

Why bother with a cover-up?

By Laura Bergells on

People in Washington say it’s not the initial offense that gets you in trouble. It’s the cover-up. They say you should admit what you did, get the story out, and move on. What this overlooks is the fact that most of the time the cover-up works just fine, and nobody finds out anything. I would …

Please: stop “hiring to cultural fit”

By Laura Bergells on

I bristle at the trendy, thoughtless phrase “hire to cultural fit”. And I’m not alone. Often, you’ll hear this phrase parroted at tech, business, and startup conferences. Generally, it means, “when hiring, consider personality first — consider tech and business skills second”. Here’s the loosey-goosey rationale for ‘hiring to cultural fit’: “Hey, it’s easier to …

How long do you plan for Q&A?

By Laura Bergells on

Q&A — questions and answers — is my favorite part of any business or training presentation. I’m curious. I like hearing what’s going on in the heads of the audience. I like learning from the audience every bit as much as learning from the presenter. When I give a presentation or training session, I almost …